The Republicans — After Dunkirk

Cash Advance

By Patrick J. Buchanan

At the Potsdam conference with Harry Truman and Josef Stalin, Winston Churchill learned that the voters of the nation he had led for five years through World War II had just voted to throw him out of office.

“It may well be a blessing in disguise,” said his wife Clementine.

“At the moment, it seems quite effectively disguised,” replied Churchill.

Republicans must feel that way today. For they have survived their own Dunkirk. They may have left their helmets, canteens and rifles behind, but they did finally get off the beach.

That Republicans suffered a rout, as the British did with the fall of France and evacuation at Dunkirk in 1940, is undeniable.

The party that blocked tax increases since George H.W. Bush agreed to raise Ronald Reagan’s top rate of 28 percent to 35 percent, thus repudiating his “no-new-taxes” pledge, just signed on to one of the largest tax increases in history.

Payroll taxes on working Americans will rise by a third, from 4.2 percent of wages and salaries to 6.2 percent. For couples earning $450,000, the tax rate rises from 15 to 20 percent on dividends and capital gains, and from 35 to 39.6 percent on ordinary income. The death tax will rise from 35 to 40 percent on estates over $5 million.

Obamacare will push those rates up further. And now we learn the bill was stuffed with tax breaks for windmills, NASCAR owners and Hollywood.

Why did Republicans go along?

Had they not, taxes would have risen for everyone. And Obama would have postured as the tax-cutting savior of the middle class by proposing to restore the Bush tax cuts for every couple earning less than $250,000.

What does this bill do to spur growth and create jobs? Nothing.

Even Lord Keynes would have wondered what these Americans were doing raising taxes on a recovering economy.

The GOP defense: We took this rotten deal to prevent a worse one.

And what, if any, is the “blessing in disguise”?

Obama has no more leverage. The Bush tax cuts for the 98 percent are now permanent. To block further tax hikes, all the House need do, from now to 2017, is stand united and just say no.

Obama is thus almost certainly staring at four more trillion-dollar deficits to match the last four, and he has no leverage to force Republicans to provide him with new revenue.

The president threatens that before he signs on to new spending cuts, Republicans will have to “make the rich pay their fair share.”

The GOP response should be: We will work with you on spending cuts, but there will be no more tax increases. If higher taxes are a condition you impose for spending cuts, there will be no spending cuts.

But, Mr. President, you will be in the driver’s seat when we go over the cliff into bankruptcy. You will be your party’s Herbert Hoover.

John Boehner and the Republicans got their clocks cleaned in these negotiations because they believed the president was dealing in good faith.

But the ideology and the interests of the Democratic Party dictate not only preserving federal programs, but expanding the numbers of beneficiaries, already near 100 million.

For the larger the number of beneficiaries, the larger the bloc of voters for the party of government and the greater the opposition to any who would dare to cut government.

The question for Republicans is what they do now, besides say no to new taxes.

Most Democrats are not going to agree to freeze or cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, food stamps, federal aid to education, Head Start, Pell Grants, housing subsidies, welfare, earned income tax credits or unemployment checks. These are the party’s pride and joy, the reason the Democratic Party exists.

As we have seen since 2009, Democrats will readily accept trillion-dollar deficits rather than do even minor surgery on their cherished programs.

As for the Republicans, is it wise to propose cuts in Social Security and Medicare, upon which Republican seniors depend, when they know for certain Democrats will reject those cuts and take credit for doing so?

Will Republicans recommend cuts in defense and foreign aid and a rollback of the U.S. military presence in Europe, the Far East and Persian Gulf? Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham already want to know why we are not intervening in Syria. Soon, some Republicans will be beating the drums for strikes on Iran.

Republicans Chris Christie and Peter King already want to know why Congress has not forked over $60 billion to repair the damage done to New Jersey and New York by Hurricane Sandy.

With the GOP splintering, with Democrats running the Senate and White House, conservatives must realize: They cannot make policy.

Let the Democrats take the lead, drive the car, propose the tax hikes, refuse to make the spending cuts and answer for where we are in 2016, because, right now, it looks as though we are headed for an even bigger cliff.

For the next two years, the best offense may be a good defense.

Is the GOP Headed for the Boneyard?

Cemetary Gate

By Patrick J. Buchanan

After its second defeat at the hands of Barack Obama, under whom unemployment has never been lower than the day George W. Bush left office, the Republican Party has at last awakened to its existential crisis.

Eighteen states have voted Democratic in six straight elections. Among the six are four of our most populous: New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois and California. And Obama has now won two of the three remaining mega-states, Ohio and Florida, twice.

Only Texas remains secure—for now.

At the presidential level, the Republican Party is at death’s door.

Yet one already sees the same physicians writing prescriptions for the same drugs that have been killing the GOP since W’s dad got the smallest share of the vote by a Republican candidate since William Howard Taft in 1912.

In ascertaining the cause of the GOP‘s critical condition, let us use Occam’s razor—the principle that the simplest explanation is often the right one.

Would the GOP wipeout in those heavily Catholic, ethnic, socially conservative, blue-collar bastions of Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio and Illinois, which Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan swept, have anything to do with the fact that the United States since 2000 has lost 6 million manufacturing jobs and 55,000 factories?

Where did all those jobs and factories go? We know where.

They were outsourced. And in the deindustrialization of America, the Republican Party has been a culpable co-conspirator.

Unlike family patriarch Sen. Prescott Bush, who voted with Barry Goldwater and Strom Thurmond against JFK’s free-trade deal, Bush I and II pumped for NAFTA, GATT, the WTO and opening America’s borders to all goods made by our new friends in the People’s Republic of China.

Swiftly, U.S. multinationals shut factories here, laid off workers, outsourced production to Asia and China, and brought their finished goods back, tax-free, to sell in the U.S.A.

Profits soared, as did the salaries of the outsourcing executives.

And their former workers? They headed for the service sector, along with their wives, to keep up on the mortgage payment, keep the kids in Catholic school and pay for the health insurance the family had lost.

Tuesday, these ex-Reagan Democrats came out to vote against some guy from Bain Capital they had been told in ads all summer was a big-time outsourcer who wrote in 2008, “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt!”

Yes, the simplest explanation is often the right one.

Republicans are also falling all over one another to express a love of Hispanics, after Mitt won only 27 percent of a Hispanic vote that is now 10 percent of the national vote.

We face demographic disaster, they are wailing. We must win a larger share of the Hispanic vote or we are doomed.

And what is the proposed solution to the GOP‘s Hispanic problem, coming even from those supposedly on the realistic right?

Amnesty for the illegals! Stop talking about a border fence and self-deportation. Drop the employer sanctions. Make the GOP a welcoming party.

And what might be problematic about following this advice?

First, it will enrage populist conservatives who supported the GOP because they believed the party’s pledges to oppose amnesty, secure the border and stop illegals from taking jobs from Americans.

And in return for double-crossing these folks and losing their votes, what would be gained by amnesty for, say, 10 million illegal aliens?

Assume in a decade all 10 million became citizens and voted like the Hispanics, black folks and Asians already here. The best the GOP could expect—the Bush share in 2004—would be 40 percent, or 4 million of those votes.

But if Tuesday’s percentages held, Democrats would get not just 6 million, but 7 million new votes to the GOP‘s less than 3 million.

Thus, if we assume the percentages of the last three elections hold, the Democratic Party would eventually gain from an amnesty a net of between 2 and 4 million new voters.

Easy to understand why Democrats are for this. But why would a Republican Party that is not suicidally inclined favor it?

Still, the GOP crisis is not so much illegal as legal immigration. Forty million legal immigrants have arrived in recent decades. Some 85 percent come from Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. Most arrived lacking the academic, language and labor skills to compete for high-paying jobs.

What does government do for them?

Subsidizes their housing and provides free education for their kids from Head Start through K-12, plus food stamps and school lunches, Pell Grants and student loans for college, Medicaid if they are sick, earned income tax credits if they work and 99 weeks of unemployment checks if they lose their job.

These are people who depend upon government.

Why would they vote for a party that is going to cut taxes they do not pay, but take away government benefits they do receive?

Again it needs be said. When the country looks like California demographically, it will look like California politically. Republicans are not whistling past the graveyard. They are right at the entrance.

The Coming Age of Austerity

Wolf2

By Patrick J. Buchanan

“Are the good times really over for good?” asked Merle Haggard in his 1982 lament.

Then, the good times weren’t over. In fact, they were coming back, with the Reagan recovery, the renewal of the American spirit and the end of a Cold War that had consumed so much of our lives.

Yet whoever wins today, it is hard to be sanguine about the future.

The demographic and economic realities do not permit it.

Consider. Between 1946 and 1964, 79 million babies were born — the largest, best-educated and most successful generation in our history. Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, both born in 1946, were in that first class of baby boomers.

The problem.

Assume that 75 million of these 79 million boomers survive to age 66. This means that from this year through 2030, an average of nearly 4 million boomers will be retiring every year. This translates into some 11,000 boomers becoming eligible for Medicare and Social Security every single day for the next 18 years.

Add in immigrants in that same age category and the fact that baby boomers live longer than the Greatest Generation or Silent Generation seniors, and you have an immense and unavoidable increase coming in expenditures for our largest entitlement programs.

Benefits will have to be curbed or cut and payroll taxes will have to rise, especially for Medicare, to make good on our promises to seniors.

As for the rest of our federal budget of nearly $4 trillion, we have run four consecutive deficits of over $1 trillion. To bring that budget to balance, freezes would have to be imposed and cuts made in spending for defense and other social programs.

From California to Wisconsin to New York, we see the process at work at the state level. Government salaries are frozen, government payrolls are cut, government pensions and programs are scaled back.

California and Illinois are on the precipice of default. Cities like Detroit, Birmingham, Stockton and San Bernardino are already there.

As for national defense, how long can we afford to spend more than the 10 other top nations combined? How long can we continue to defend scores of nations half a world away? How many more trillion-dollar wars like Iraq and Afghanistan can we fight on borrowed money?

Moreover, the day of the great national enterprises is over.

FDR had his New Deal and World War II, Ike his federal highway system, Kennedy his space program, LBJ his Great Society, Reagan his military buildup and tax cuts, Bush his two wars and tax cuts, Obama his Obamacare.

But there is nothing left in the till to do big things. One sees only deficits and debt all the way to the horizon.

Europe has arrived at where we are headed. In the south of the old continent — Spain, Italy and Greece — the new austerity has begun to imperil the social order. In the north, the disposition to be taxed to pay for other nations’ social safety nets is disappearing.

With government in the U.S. at all levels consuming 40 percent of gross domestic product, and taxes 30 percent, taxes will have to rise and government spending be controlled or cut. The alternative is to destroy the debt by depreciating the dollars in which it is denominated — i.e., by Fed-induced inflation.

But you can only rob your creditors once. After that, they never trust you again.

There is another social development rarely discussed.

The workers who are replacing retiring baby boomers in the labor force are increasingly minorities.

Black folks and Hispanics alone account now for 30 percent of the population — and rising rapidly.

Yet these two minorities have high school dropout rates of up to 50 percent in many cities, and many who do graduate have math, reading and science scores at seventh-, eighth- and ninth-grade levels.

Can their contributions to an advanced economy be as great as were those of baby boomers of the ’60s and ’70s, whose SAT scores were among the highest we ever recorded? U.S. scores in global competition have been plummeting toward Third World levels.

Everyone talks about how we are going to raise test scores. But, despite record and rising investments in education per student, no one in decades has found a way to do this consistently.

Moreover, while boomers were almost all born into families where mother and father were married and living together, Hispanics have a 53 percent illegitimacy rate, African-Americans a 73 percent rate.

Among the white poor and working class, the illegitimacy rate is now 40 percent — almost twice as high as it was in black America when Pat Moynihan wrote his 1965 report on the crisis of the black family.

And between the illegitimacy rate and the drug-use rate, dropout rate, crime rate and incarceration rate, the correlation is absolute.

Some of us are often accused of always “crying wolf.”

But it is worth noting that one day the wolf came.

In the Long Run, Is the GOP Dead?

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Since 1928, only Dwight Eisenhower and George W. Bush have won the presidency while capturing both houses of Congress for the GOP.

In his 49-state landslide, Richard Nixon failed to take either House. In his two landslides, Ronald Reagan won back only the Senate. Yet Mitt Romney is even money to pull off the hat trick.

With this hopeful prospect, why the near despair among so many Republicans about the long term?

In his New York Times report, “In California, GOP Fights Steep Decline,” Adam Nagourney delves into the reasons.

In the Golden Land, a state Nixon carried all five times he was on a national ticket and Reagan carried by landslides all four times he ran, the GOP does not hold a single statewide office. It gained not a single House seat in the 2010 landslide. Party registration has fallen to 30 percent of the California electorate and is steadily sinking.

Why? It is said that California Republicans are too out of touch, too socially conservative on issues like right-to-life and gay rights. “When you look at the population growth,” says GOP consultant Steve Schmidt, “the actual party is shrinking. It’s becoming more white. It’s becoming older.”

Race, age and ethnicity are at the heart of the problem. And they portend not only the party’s death in California, but perhaps its destiny in the rest of America.

Consider. Almost 90 percent of all Republican voters in presidential elections are white. Almost 90 percent are Christians. But whites fell to 74 percent of the electorate in 2008 and were only 64 percent of the population. Christians are down to 75 percent of the population from 85 in 1990. The falloff continues and is greatest among the young.

Consider ethnicity. Hispanics were 15 percent of the U.S. population in 2008 and 7.4 percent of the electorate. Both percentages will inexorably rise.

Yet in their best years, like 2004, Republicans lose the Hispanic vote 3-to-2. In bad years, like 2008, they lose it 2-to-1. Whites are already a minority in California, and Hispanics will eventually become the majority.

Say goodbye to the Golden Land.

Asian-Americans voted 3-to-2 for Obama, black Americans 24-to-1. The Asian population in California and the nation is growing rapidly. The black population, 13 percent of the nation, is growing steadily.

Whites, already a minority in our two most populous states, will be less than half the U.S. population by 2041 and a minority in 10 states by 2020.

Consider now the Electoral College picture.

Of the seven mega-states, California, New York and Illinois appear lost to the GOP. Pennsylvania has not gone Republican since 1988. Ohio and Florida, both crucial, are now swing states. Whites have become a minority in Texas. When Texas goes, America goes.

This year could be the last hurrah.

The GOP must work harder to win Hispanic votes, we are told. But consider the home economics and self-interest of Hispanics.

Half of all U.S. wage-earners pay no income tax. Yet that half and their families receive free education K-12, Medicaid, rent supplements, food stamps, earned income tax credits, Pell grants, welfare payments, unemployment checks and other benefits.

Why should poor, working- and middle-class Hispanics, the vast majority, vote for a party that will reduce taxes they don’t pay, but cut the benefits they do receive?

The majority of Latinos, African-Americans, immigrants and young people 18 to 25 pay no income taxes yet enjoy a panoply of government benefits. Does not self-interest dictate a vote for the party that will let them keep what they have and perhaps give them more, rather than the party that will pare back what they now receive?

What are the historic blunders of the Grand Old Party that may yet appear on the autopsy report as probable causes of death?

First, the party, intimidated by name-calling, refused to stop a tidal wave of immigration that brought 40 million people here whose families depend heavily on government. We needed a time-out to assimilate them and see them move out of the tax-consuming sector of the nation.

Republicans acquiesced in the importation of a new electorate that may provide the decisive votes to send the party to the ash heap of history.

Second, Republicans, when enacting tax cuts, repeatedly dropped millions of taxpayers off the rolls, creating a huge class that contributes little to pay for the expanding cornucopia of benefits it receives.

Third, the social revolution of the 1960s captured the culture and converted much of the nation. According to a new Pew poll, the number of Americans who profess a belief in no religion at all has tripled since the 1990s and is now one in five of our countrymen.

If your racial and ethnic voter base is aging, shrinking and dying, your moral code is being rejected, and the tax-consuming class has been allowed to grow to equal or to dwarf the taxpaying class, the Grand Old Party has a problem. But then so, too, does the country.

Has the Bell Begun to Toll for the GOP?

By Patrick J. Buchanan

Among the more controversial chapters in “Suicide of a Superpower,” my book published last fall, was the one titled, “The End of White America.”

It dealt with the demographic decline of the white majority and what it portends for education, the U.S. economy, politics and national unity.

That book and chapter proved the proximate cause of my departure from MSNBC, where the network president declared that subjects such as these are inappropriate for “the national dialogue.”

Apparently, the mainstream media are reassessing that.

For, in rare unanimity, The New York Times, The Washington Post and USA Today all led yesterday with the same story.

“Whites Account for Under Half of Births in U.S.,” blared the Times headline. “Minority Babies Majority in U.S.,” echoed the Post. “Minorities Are Now a Majority of Births,” proclaimed USA Today.

The USA Today story continued, “The nation’s growing diversity has huge implications for education, economics and politics.”

Huge is right.

Not only are whites declining as a share of the population, they are declining in real terms. Between 2010 and 2011, the number of births to white women fell 10 percent. The median age of white Americans, now 43 and rising, means that half of all white women have moved past the age that they are ever likely to bear more children.

White America is a dying tribe.

What do these statistics mean politically? Almost surely the end of the Republican Party as a national governing institution.

Republicans now depend on the vanishing majority for fully 90 percent of their votes in presidential elections, while the Democratic Party wins 60 to 70 percent of the Asian and Hispanic vote and 90 to 95 percent of the black vote.

The Democratic base is growing inexorably, while the Republican base is shriveling.

Already, California, Illinois and New York are lost. The GOP has not carried any of the three in five presidential elections. When Texas — where whites are a minority and a declining share of the population — tips, how does the GOP put together an electoral majority?

Western states like Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Arizona, which Republican nominees like Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan swept almost every time they ran, are becoming problematic for the party.

Thus the GOP refrain: We must work harder to win over Hispanics.

Undeniably true. But how does the GOP appeal to them?

Fifty-three percent of all Hispanic children are born out of wedlock, with no father in the home and many of the moms themselves high school dropouts. Most Hispanic kids thus start school far behind.

In tests of fourth-, eighth- and 12th-graders, their scores are closer to those of African-American kids than whites and Asians. Their dropout rate matches that of black kids. Absent affirmative action, not only are America’s colleges and universities but her professions are going to look far more Asian and white than the national population.

Not a formula for social peace.

Comes the reply: We must spend more to close the racial gap in test scores. Yet, according to The Washington Examiner, in the District of Columbia, the community where we have spent perhaps the most per capita to close the racial gap in test scores, the racial gap is by far the largest in the nation.

Not only do we seem not to know how to close it after four decades of plunging trillions into public schools, the country is tapped out. We are in the fourth consecutive year of trillion-dollar deficits, and our largest and richest state, California, just discovered its deficit has exploded to $16 billion.

And why should Hispanics vote Republican?

The majority of Hispanics are among that half of the population that pays no income tax. Why should they vote for a party whose major plank is that it will cut income taxes?

Hispanics benefit disproportionately from government programs.

Government puts their kids in Head Start before pubic school and provides them with Pell grants and student loans after public school.

From kindergarten through 12th grade, government educates their kids for free. Government provides them with free or subsidized health care through Medicaid and clinics. Government provides their families with public housing and rent supplements. Government provides the food stamps that feed the family. Government provides them with an annual earned income tax credit, a check just for working.

Government provides all these things, and what are Republicans going to do? They promise to cut government.

Again, why should Hispanics vote Republican?

Establishment Republicans say the party should support amnesty for illegal aliens. Yet this would make millions more eligible for federal programs in a country sinking in debt and mean millions more Hispanics going to the polls, and millions more coming to America in anticipation of the next amnesty.

How would that help the GOP?

By endlessly expanding Great Society programs, by lopping taxpayers off tax rolls, by supporting open borders and endless immigration from the Third World, the Republican Party, out of sheer nobility of character, has probably ensured its impending departure from history.

A Nation Arms Itself — For What?

By Patrick J. Buchanan

With the shooting death of Trayvon Martin by a neighborhood watch volunteer who was legally carrying a 9-millimeter handgun, the familiar wail has arisen from our cultural and media elite:

America has too many guns!

“Open carry” and “concealed carry” laws should be repealed.

Florida’s “Stand-your-ground” law, replicated in two dozen states, threatens to turn America into the Tombstone of Doc Holiday and Wyatt Earp. This is insane!

The United Nations agrees. This year, the world body takes up the global control of firearms, including small arms in the hands of citizens.

According to Sen. Rand Paul, the U.N. “Small Arms Treaty” will almost surely mandate tougher licensing requirements to own a gun, require the confiscation and destruction of unauthorized civilian firearms, call for a ban on the trade, sale and private ownership of semi-automatic weapons, and create an international gun registry.

No more Colt .45s in the top drawer or M-1 rifles in the closet.

Memo to the U.N.: Lots of luck.

Forty-five Republican and 12 Democratic senators have declared their opposition to any such U.N. treaty, which means it is dead in the water the moment it is launched from Turtle Bay.

For when it comes to Second Amendment rights, Middle America has spoken — at the ballot box and the gun store. And Congress, most state legislatures and the federal courts have all come down on the side of the Silent Majority.

In District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), the Supreme Court struck down one of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation, assuring district citizens of their right to keep a gun in the home.

U.S. Judge Benson E. Legg just struck down the section of Maryland’s gun law that left it to local authorities to decide if a citizen could carry a gun outside his house.

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, mentioned as a running mate for Mitt Romney, just signed a law striking down a 20-year ban that kept residents from buying more than one pistol per month. In Virginia’s legislature in 1993, McDonnell had voted in favor of the one-gun-per-month rule.

The new law ignited New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who calls Virginia “the No. 1 out-of-state source of crime guns in New York and one of the top suppliers of crime guns nationally.”

Two New York cops have been shot this year, one fatally, with guns from Virginia.

But there is another side to the gun story, and University of Houston Professor Larry Bell relates it:

“Law-abiding citizens in America used guns in self-defense 2.5 million times in 1993 (about 6,825 times per day), and actually shot and killed two and a half times as many criminals as police did (1,527 to 606). These self-defense shootings resulted in less than one-fifth as many incidents as police where an innocent person was mistakenly identified as a criminal (2 percent versus 11 percent).”

The figures tell the story. Along with rising incarceration rates, the proliferation of guns in the hands of the law-abiding has been a factor in the nation’s falling crime rate.

And that proliferation has accelerated under President Obama.

According to ammo.net, tax revenues from the sale of firearms and ammunition have gone up 48 percent since 2008, with Iowa, North Carolina and Utah registering revenue gains of over 100 percent.

On Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, there were 129,666 background checks of individuals seeking to buy a gun, the highest one-day search in history This exceeded by 32,000 the number of background checks by gun dealers on Black Friday 2010.

Background searches in December broke the all-time monthly record set in November, as 1,534,414 inquiries were made to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System about prospective gun-buyers.

Half a million inquiries came in the six days before Christmas.

Why are Americans arming themselves?

More and more citizens, says the National Rifle Association, fear that if or when they confront a threat to their family, lives or property, the police will not be there.

Reports of home invasions and flash mobs have firmed up the market for firearms. After the 1992 Los Angeles riot, when Californians found themselves defenseless in homes and shops, gun sales soared.

Others argue that a fear of new laws in an Obama second term, or even the possible confiscation of handguns, is driving sales.

Gun-control organizations claim that gun ownership is actually declining, that fewer and fewer people are buying more and more of these guns.

But the numbers seem to contradict the gun-controllers.

A 2005 Gallup survey found that three in 10 Americans own a gun, that 40 percent had a gun in the house, that nearly half of all men own a gun, as do one in seven women. Two-thirds of all gun-owners gave as a reason they own a gun: protection against crime.

America is an armed camp, with the South and Midwest the most heavily armed. Yet, still, Americans buy guns in the millions every year.

Why? Whatever the answer, it is our business, not the U.N.’s.

It’s All About Race Now

By Patrick J. Buchanan

If it had been a white teenager who was shot, and a 28-year-old black guy who shot him, the black guy would have been arrested.

So assert those demanding the arrest of George Zimmerman, who shot and killed Trayvon Martin.

And they may be right.

Yet if Trayvon had been shot dead by a black neighborhood watch volunteer, Jesse Jackson would not have been in a pulpit in Sanford, Fla., howling that he had been “murdered and martyred.”

Maxine Waters would not be screaming “hate crime.”

Rep. Hank Johnson would not be raging that Trayvon had been “executed.” And ex-Black Panther Bobby Rush would not have been wearing a hoodie in the well of the House.

Which tells you what this whipped-up hysteria is all about.

It is not about finding the truth about what happened that night in Sanford when Zimmerman followed Trayvon in his SUV, and the two wound up in a fight, with Trayvon dead.

It is about the exacerbation of and the exploitation of racial conflict.

And it is about an irreconcilable conflict of visions about what the real America is in the year 2012.

Zimmerman “profiled” Trayvon, we are told. And perhaps he did.

But why? What did George Zimmerman, self-styled protector of his gated community, see that night from the wheel of his SUV?

He saw a male. And males are 90 percent of prison inmates. He saw a stranger over 6 feet tall. And he saw a black man or youth with a hood over his head.

Why would this raise Zimmerman’s antennae?

Perhaps because black males between 16 and 36, though only 2 to 3 percent of the population, are responsible for a third of all our crimes.

In some cities, 40 percent of all black males are in jail or prison, on probation or parole, or have criminal records. This is not a product of white racism but of prosecutions and convictions of criminal acts.

Had Zimmerman seen a black woman or older man in his neighborhood, he likely would never have tensed up or called in.

For all the abuse he has received, Geraldo Rivera had a point.

Whenever cable TV runs hidden-camera footage of a liquor or convenience store being held up and someone behind the counter being shot, the perp is often a black male wearing a hoodie.

Listening to the heated rhetoric coming from demonstrations around the country, from the Black Caucus and TV talkers — about how America is a terrifying place for young black males to grow up in because of the constant danger from white vigilantes — one wonders what country of the mind these people are living in.

The real America is a country where the black crime rate is seven times as high as the white rate. It is a country where white criminals choose black victims in 3 percent of their crimes, but black criminals choose white victims in 45 percent of their crimes.

Black journalists point to the racism manifest even in progressive cities, where cabs deliberately pass them by to pick up white folks down the block.

That this happens is undeniable. But, again, what is behind it?

As Heather Mac Donald of the Manhattan Institute has written, from January to June 2008 in New York City, 83 percent of all identified gun assailants were black and 15 percent were Hispanics.

Together, blacks and Hispanics accounted for 98 percent of gun assaults.

Translated: If a cabdriver is going to be mugged or murdered in New York City by a fare, 49 times out of 50 his assailant or killer will be black or Hispanic.

Fernando Mateo of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers has told his drivers, “Profile your passengers” for your own protection. “The God’s honest truth is that 99 percent of the people that are robbing, stealing, killing these guys are blacks and Hispanics.”

Fernando Mateo is himself black and Hispanic.

To much of America’s black leadership and its media auxiliaries, what happened in Sanford was, as Jesse put it, that an innocent kid was “shot down in cold blood by a vigilante.”

Yet, from police reports, witness statements, and the father and friends of Zimmerman, another picture emerges.

Zimmerman followed Trayvon, confronted him, and was punched in the nose, knocked flat on his back and jumped on, getting his head pounded, when he pulled his gun and fired. That Trayvon’s body was found face down, not face up, would tend to support this.

But, to Florida Congresswoman Federica Wilson, “this sweet young boy … was hunted down like a dog, shot on the street, and his killer is still at large.”

Some Sanford police believed Zimmerman; others did not.

But now that it is being investigated by a special prosecutor, the FBI, the Justice Department and a coming grand jury, what is the purpose of this venomous portrayal of George Zimmerman?

As yet convicted of no crime, he is being crucified in the arena of public opinion as a hate-crime monster and murderer.

Is this our idea of justice?

No. But if the purpose here is to turn this into a national black-white face-off, instead of a mutual search for truth and justice, it is succeeding marvelously well.